An Oldie but Goodie for Mental Health Awareness Month: Stress-related Disorders

Here’s an article I penned in 2010 around this time of year. Still very relevant…..

—————————————————————————————————————————————-

This month makes a year that I’ve been writing articles for medical education. My first article centered on the issue of depression and being self-aware of the warning signs.

Here are some of the most common stress-related disorders that I see on a daily basis.

  1. Depression and anxiety/panic disorders. This is pretty easy to understand. The more stress a person has, the worse underlying mental health disorders can become. The stress of loss of a loved one, loss of a job or threat of losing your job, or a strained relationship can lead to overwhelming sadness or symptoms of panic. Insomnia and sleep disturbances can occur as racing thoughts and worry increase at night. Alcohol and tobacco abuse can also occur concurrently as ways to self-medicate in the absence of correct ways of treatment such as prayer, counseling, therapy or prescribed medication.
  2. Hypertension and heart disease. Otherwise known as high blood pressure, stress can cause an increase in constriction of blood vessels. Stress has not been proven as a direct cause of high blood pressure, but it can have an overall effect on the release of hormones from the nervous system and circulatory systems, which makes it harder for the heart to pump blood to our vital organs. If blood pressure is chronically high and blood vessels have enough damage or cholesterol buildup, heart disease can be the result. Some chest pain can even be linked to stress.
  3. GERD (acid reflux) and stomach ulcers. Emotional stress can lead to an increased production of acid from proton pumps and H2 receptors in our stomachs. If acidity is prominent, a burning sensation can be felt and pain can extend from the stomach (in the center and to the left of the middle of the stomach) all the way up to the esophagus and throat. Foods that we eat, including caffeinated beverages, spicy ingredients and citrus can make this worse. If left for too long, ulcers, or an eating away of the lining of the stomach, can develop and even worsen to the point of bleeding.
  4. Obesity. Stress can cause an increase of the hormone cortisol to be released from the adrenal glands. Cortisol is linked to increased glucose (blood sugar) and weight gain. Also, while some of us eat less with stress, many of us eat more “comfort foods,” which are generally more sweet and fatty, and have more calories.
  5. Headaches. Migraines are thought to be the most common type of headache, but tension is probably higher on the list of causes of headache. Both types can increase with stress. With tension headaches, a tense pressure or squeeze can be felt in any part of the head, usually with muscle tension and soreness of the neck and even shoulders. Migraines are thought to be associated with signals from the nervous system that relax blood vessels. When vessels relax, blood rushes to them and cause dilation. If too dilated, this can cause pain.
  6. Abnormal menstrual cycles. Skipping a period can be very distressing for a woman, especially if unexplained. Although we don’t know what the certain cause is, it is thought that emotional stress affects release of certain pituitary hormones that can cause irregular periods. If weight is lost or gained due to stress, estrogen or a lack thereof, it can also cause irregular periods.
  7. Viral infections. When we’re stressed or fatigued, our immune system doesn’t work as well to prevent us from infection. We all have antibodies from vaccines or from previous infections that have built up in memory cells and are programmed to increase when we are exposed to infections. Stress reduces this response. Colds can occur more frequently and, even worse, viruses such as herpes and HPV (human papilloma virus can show themselves during these “down” times.
  8. Cancers. This one is controversial, as some studies say one thing and some say another. The conflicting data questions whether stress can be a direct cause of some cancers. In 2002, a study was done on patients who had breast cancer that was treated. The question was asked if stress could be linked to the cancer coming back. The study could not prove it to be true. However, in animal studies, an increase of stress hormones was linked directly to growth of some tumors. Long story short, the evidence is inconsistent, but there may be truth to the claim that stress can lead to certain cancers.

All in all, be self-aware of the signs. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, as we all at some point do, be pro-active by exercising, drinking plenty of water, getting good restful sleep and doing those things that you enjoy doing with those you love. If it still feels like life is crashing down on you or your body is breaking down, please see your doctor.

Advertisements

WeHaveKids Shares My Thoughts on Probiotics

I contributed to an article featured on WeHaveKids.com. I shared my opinions on stomach issues in children. I share my support for using probiotics for an aching tummy. See here or read below!

Thanks,

DocSwiner

When “Mommy, My Stomach Hurts!” Requires Medical Attention

Updated on May 9, 2018

I am a mother who had the ordeal of a daughter with appendicitis.

We’ve all had upset stomachs from time to time. We often don’t worry about it since we chalk it up to something we ate. However, it is always concerning when your child says their stomach hurts. You’re not sure if they had just overindulged from the tub of ice cream or if something serious is going on.

There can be a variety of reasons for their discomfort. Before you panic, keep in mind that most causes for stomach aches are pretty banal and can be resolved with time and possibly an antacid for children. However, you should be aware of more serious causes like appendicitis. I had the experience of my daughter suffering from this. This article is intended to share my story as well as keep you informed for when your child says they have stomach pain.

This CAT scan shows a case of appendicitis. Note that the diameter of the appendix is swelled up to 17 mm in diameter. The normal size is around seven or eight mm.
This CAT scan shows a case of appendicitis. Note that the diameter of the appendix is swelled up to 17 mm in diameter. The normal size is around seven or eight mm. | Source

What Causes Stomach Pain in a Child?

Abdominal pain in a child can be troubling but the cause for it may not be serious. There are a variety of causes that are not life-threatening or do not require a visit to the emergency room.

Constipation

Studies have shown that constipation is responsible for nearly half of all cases of sudden stomach pain in children. It can be assumed constipation is the cause if your child has not gone to the restroom in two days or if their stool is hard. However, according to Dr. Dan Thomas, a pediatric gastroenterologist at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, a bowel movement may not eliminate everything in their colon. Here are some preventive and relief measures.

  • Make sure your child gets plenty of fiber and fluids.
  • Avoid heavy consumption of processed grains and dairy.
  • Whole-grain cereals and pear juice can help alleviate symptoms.
  • Check with a pediatrician if your child can take any over-the-counter medication that can soften their stool.
  • Do not give your child any laxatives that is intended for adults.
  • Have your child try probiotics. “These natural bacteria, found in most yogurts or as over-the-counter supplements or vitamins, replenish the gut and help balance ph levels,” says Dr. C. Nicole Swiner, a family medicine specialist at Durham Family Medicine in Durham, North Carolina. “They’re a safe, non-pharmaceutical treatment for constipation, diarrhea, and other “below the belt” issues. It’s my go-to for my five and seven-year-old.”

Gas

Gas is naturally produced by food being broken down in the large intestine. Some children can produce more than others, especially if they eat a lot of sugar. Excessive gas can be painful. Dairy foods can create great discomfort if your child is lactose intolerant. The best solution for this is to identify what your child is eating that is causing uncomfortable gas. You can read this useful article that describes which foods causes and prevents gas.

Gastroesophageal Reflux

It can surprising to hear but children can indeed suffer from heartburn. A symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) includes stomach aches. According to Nationwide Children’s, this can occur when a child eats spicy food, fried food, junk food, or acidic food. It is best to implement preventive measures such as ensuring your child eats fruits and vegetables to balance out acid levels. You may check with a pediatrician if any type of medication can be used.

Abdominal Migraine

According to the American Migraine Foundation, this is a condition mostly found in children age five to nine. The symptoms include stomach pain, nausea, and vomiting. The triggers for the pain are similar to those of migraine headaches. Medication may be prescribed if the migraines are frequent. Children with abdominal migraines may go on to develop migraine headaches later in life.

These are gallstones formed from cholesterol. For size reference, each grid is 1 mm.
These are gallstones formed from cholesterol. For size reference, each grid is 1 mm. | Source

When to Worry About Your Child’s Stomach Pain

If your child’s stomach pain does not improve in 24 hours, gets worse, or becomes more frequent, then something serious may be happening. These are some causes that require medical attention.

Gallstones

Gallstones are formed when the bile in your gallbladder hardens into stone-like objects. The can cause blockage in the hepatic ducts, which can lead to infection and organ damage. While not common in children, it does happen. According to Seattle’s Children, the most common symptom is pain in the upper belly, typically on the right side. The pain is recurring and could potentially last for hours. Pain can occur after eating a meal, especially if the food is fatty or greasy. For more information, you can read this in-depth article on problems and treatments related to gallstones.

Stomach Ulcer

This is a lesion in the stomach. According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, they are often caused by an infection of Heliobacter pylori, a bacteria that weakens the protective mucus in the stomach. The most common symptom for this is a burning or gnawing pain in the stomach. Other symptoms include anemia and fatigue. Treatment may include a variety of medicines and even surgery if needed. You can read this article which covers more complications and treatments of stomach ulcers.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

This is a chronic disease where the stomach, small intestine, or colon are inflamed or irritated. According to the American College of Gastroenterology, this condition is relatively rare in children, although it is slightly more common with teens around ages 15 to 19. The most common symptom is abdominal pain along with diarrhea and the presence of blood in bowel movements. Medication will be needed to treat this disease.

Intussusception

This is a life-threatening condition where a part of the intestine folds into another segment. This obstructs food from passing through the intestine. This can lead to infections such as peritonitis. According to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, there is no known cause, although viral infections and abnormalities like polyps may play a role. Abdominal pain is the most common symptom. Vomiting may occur as well as bloody stool. Treatment is done with an enema or with surgery in more dire cases.

A CAT scan showing a case of intussusception. The circular target sign indicates where one part of the bowel folded into another.
A CAT scan showing a case of intussusception. The circular target sign indicates where one part of the bowel folded into another. | Source

Appendicitis

This is a condition where the appendix suffers from inflammation. If an infected appendix is not removed, it can burst and spread bacteria. This can lead to serious infections and can cause peritonitis.

What causes appendicitis in children?

According to KidsHealth, appendicitis is the result of the appendix being blocked. This blockage is typically caused by hard stool (called fecolith), lymphadenopathy (the inflammation of lymph nodes), or even infections from parasites. A ruptured appendix can release bacteria throughout the abdomen, which can cause further complications. Appendicitis usually affects children and teens between the age of 10 and 20. It is the most common reason for emergency abdominal surgery in children.

What are the symptoms of appendicitis?

You should call a doctor if your child is experiencing any of the following symptoms.

  • Strong stomach pain near the belly button or around the lower right side of the abdomen. The pain can begin infrequently before becoming more constant.
  • The presence of a low fever.
  • A decrease in appetite.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Diarrhea, particularly if mucus is present.
  • An infant with appendicitis may have their abdomen appear swollen or bloated.

My Personal Experience

One of the main reasons I am writing this is to potentially help save a child’s life. Here is my story!

A few years ago my daughter complained of a stomach ache. Being the typical mom, I dismissed it as something she ate or she needed to have a bowel movement. The next morning, she said her stomach still hurt, but I got her dressed, fed her crackers, and sent her off to school. Since I work at the school, I told the teacher if her stomach continues to hurt, allow her to put her head down and I would pick her up immediately following school. My daughter rested all day in class but nothing major happened. I checked with the teacher who said she seemed fine by the end of the day. I checked with my daughter who said she felt better, so I decided to stay at work and send her to extended care to play for a while.

About an hour after arriving home, she said her stomach pain had returned. At this point I was wondering if she was faking this whole thing—but then again, after raising three other kids, I have learned to never accuse them of faking because you never know. So I called her doctor and explained the problem: stomach pain, vomiting on the first day, no fever, no diarrhea, no appetite. The doctor felt it was maybe the flu coming on. I did not believe it was the flu. She was not coughing, sniffling, or had a sore throat. So I did what every typical mother does. I jumped on the Internet and researched the flu.

My little sunshine felt better the next morning, so off to school we went. But later that day she ate and vomited and also developed a sore throat, so I decided to keep her home and keep an eye on her. She started to run a fever and get the sniffles so I figured that it was the flu. I took her to the doctor and they gave her an antibiotic for her throat. I ran out to get all the typical cough medicine and fill her with fluids. By Monday she felt better and we were off to another week at school. No stomach pain, no fever, nothing. Great!

The following week she developed a bizarre rash, so I took her to the doctor because I figured that she had been sick for two weeks now and this was not normal. I have watched enough House to know this was not normal. The doctor told me it was just a rash and gave her a steroid and discontinued the antibiotic. A few days later she felt better.

The following week she began to complain of stomach pain again. I told her to rest and see if it goes away. She played with her siblings so I dismissed the problem. In the middle of the night she came to get into bed with us, which is not abnormal. The next morning she complained of her stomach hurting but this time, she was rocking with the pain. I went to the Internet to research stomach pain in children. I wrote down her bowel movements and charted the past 2 ½ weeks. I went to the store to get something to help with her stomach ache. When I returned home she was in tears. I rushed to her side, trying to remain calm as I determined what was wrong. I took her temperature; low grade! I asked the typical questions. Where does it hurt? How bad is the pain? Are you hungry? Are you thirsty? Can you get up? Did you go potty since mommy left?

I gave her a painkiller and some plum juice to move the crowd inside. A few moments later, she cries louder. I go back to her room and she is rocking even more, this time holding her stomach. I stretch her legs out and lay my hand on her stomach. She tells me that doesn’t hurt. I press down and she cries louder. I tell the other children to get dressed because we are leaving. I call her pediatrician to let her know I am going to the emergency room. She concurs and off we go!

I will spare you the emergency room nightmare. Let’s just say that after a five hour wait we finally get blood test and a CT scan. The doctor came in to give us the bad news. Our daughter had to have surgery because she had appendicitis. Then another doctor entered the room and asked me to explain what happened. I told him how the pain started weeks ago, and how I called the doctor, took her to the doctor twice, and how this morning she was crying in pain but now she felt better. She was talking, laughing, and having a good time. She was her old self again. Were they sure this was appendicitis?

The head physician stated (and I quote), “This is not good.” Now I am scared. He tells us the pain leaving is the calm before the storm, how sometimes right before your appendix ruptures, you don’t feel pain. He explained how the pain with appendicitis comes and goes and that she needed surgery immediately!

Within minutes, a surgeon entered the room and explained everything, how fecal matter gets into your appendix and it gets infected and requires removal. He explained why my five-year-old needed surgery within the hour, as soon as they assembled a team. I was on the phone with all my prayer warriors, asking them to get the lines of prayer open. My husband and I prayed over our daughter and for the healing of her little body.

What Happened?

My daughter came home and recovered—praise God. The surgeons stated her appendix was nasty and they were sure they caught it just before it ruptured. The surgeon said my daughter must posses a high pain tolerance because she should have been screaming in agony—it was really bad. I know God was watching over my daughter because this could have turned out much worse. I pray this article and my story will help you.

Sources

  • Appendicitis. (2015, May). From KidsHealth.
  • Abdominal Migraine. From American Migraine Foundation.
  • Eller, D. (2015, July 15). “My Stomach Hurts”: Common Causes and Cures for Tummy Trouble. From Parents.
  • Gallstones. From Seattle Children’s.
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Children. From American College of Gastroenterology.
  • Intussusception. (2014, March 31). From Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
  • Stomach and Duodenal Ulcers in Children. From University of Rochester Medical Center.
  • What to Do If Your Child Complains of Heartburn. From Nationwide Children’s.

I’m sooooooo looking forward to the Spring and Summer! 3 reasons to join me at Unscripted this Season.

I think I might have a little S.A.D (Seasonal Affective Disorder) during the winter season, or I’m truly a Spring baby, having been birthed in April. One good winter snow and Christmas celebration, and I’m good on the cold weather. I’m almost immediately ready for the longer days, warmth and sunshine of the Spring, and our recent time at Unscripted Hotel here in Durham gave us a quick taste of what’s to come once the warm weather hits. My birthday trip to Cabo in Mexico definitely has me ‘feening’ for warm days, sitting by the pool and cocktails. I’m sure Unscripted can scratch that itch at home 🙂 Here are 3 reasons why:

 

  1. The folks: Tabitha Rodriguez-manager extraordinaire of Unscripted- personally invited me and my husband to their chef tasting and “aphrodisiac” cocktail night, featuring Bedlam Vodka, on Valentine’s Day. It was a short-and-sweet preview of the food and cocktails that I’m looking forward to having more of on the rooftop near Unscripted’s pool and pool-side bar, once the sunshine hits.
  2. The food: For the VDay meal, we feasted on the first course of oyster pearls. Then, we were then given a variety of delectable cocktails, including ones with coffee and chocolate. My favorite that night was the bacon-wrapped asparagus. Although these aren’t offered on a daily basis (only on special occasions), the food there, in general, is great. Give the Impossible Burger a try, with some fries, next time you’re there.
  3. My bday: Most weekends, you can find your fave local DJs in the lobby and enjoy drinks on the comfy couches. It’s where I’ll be this Friday celebrating my 40th birthday. Come on out and celebrate with us as DJ Mic Check blesses us on the 1s and 2s.

Soooooo excited for the Spring and Summer!

DocDocBirthdayFlyer

20180214_194218

 

Parenting While Traveling: Tips for the Kids

Mom&Kids

We literally just dropped our 2 kids off to stay with their grandparents for the week, as we prepare to travel to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. They’re not quite the ages yet where they could travel internationally comfortably. However, for those that are traveling abroad with their little ones, here are some medical and parenting tips for you:
1. Make sure their vaccines are updated. If traveling between now and May, flu is still a risk for very young children. Please make sure they’re vaccinated, along with Tdap and MMR, if needed. If you’re unsure, ask your medical provider to check their records.
2. Make sure you don’t need to purchase them their own ticket. If still in a carrier seat, you can likely hold them in your lap and check the seat. Check with each airline to see what the age cut off is for needing their own, individual seat.
3. Carry lots of snacks and sanitized wipes. The other passengers on the flight will love you for keeping your little ones content with snacks on the plane. But, please don’t forget the sanitizer and sanitized wipes, for obvious reasons.
4. Electronics are ok. There has been a lot of heated debate lately about how much screen time kids should be allowed and at what age. As a family doctor, I understand where the professionals and concerned parents are coming from. However, as a parent myself, I have allowed and do allow my children to watch TV and play with electronic tablets….after their homework has been completed. If they misbehave or their grades begin to slip, the screens are the first rewards to go away. With travel, screens have saved our lives. The flight and rides are much more calm and quiet if the iPads are brought along. We also tend to lean toward almost all educational programs for them to watch. Go with your gut.
5. Enjoy them. Try to relax and not be so stringent with the schedule and the rules that you forget to have fun. That’s true when traveling and when at home. Our time with our kids goes by so quickly and they grow up so fast. Don’t forget you’re making memories on your vacations. Be present and be safe out there.
Have fun!
DocSwinertravel-check-list-u

The Health of Black Men & Hip Hop…for the culture

With recent events, this topic has been on my heart…….

I recently checked off a box on my bucket list—I made it on a hip hop album!

I was asked by Phonte’ Coleman, one of my all-time fave hip hop MCs (solo artist and of the legendary group, Little Brother) and singers (yes, he has a wonderful voice when singing lead for The Foreign Exchange), to lend my speaking voice for his new album, No News is Good News. I jumped up from my Sunday nap, ran downstairs, screamed with joy to my tech-brilliant hubby, gathered myself back together, and with a make-shift mic and recording booth in the basement, we recorded about 30 seconds of health advice for black America. I’m sandwiched between two very poignant and honest songs on the album; Pastor Tigallo and Expensive Genes, both dealing with very serious commentary on the health of black men right now. It sparked the idea of this article immediately.

The release of this album couldn’t have come at a more important time. In the midst of the hip hop culture recently, many health concerns and realities have surfaced. The recent death of hip hop legend Craig Mack (of Bad Boy fame, “Flava in Ya Ear,” the hospitalization of rap mogul Rick Ross, and many other instances, very important questions have been raised about health in the black community–for black men, in particular. The climate caused me to reach out to my physician colleague, Doc Bintu (Dr. Khaalisha Bintu Ajala), Internal Medicine doctor and founder of Heartbeats and HipHop, to discuss what we as physicians can do to better educate the culture about health.

DocSwiner: Music, specifically hip hop, has and has had a major influence on black culture. Recently, the Triangle’s own hip hop artist, Phonte, released an album telling a story about life’s balances and imbalances. Yet, it seems most mainstream hip hop music (at times) praises lack of sleep, unhealthy habits, the use of drugs and overuse of alcohol. Do you think that musical artists could do more in terms of promoting health?

Doc Bintu: Yes, they could. However, rap is not a monolith by any means. I think everyone tells their own story. You have certain corporations who have a vested interest in popularity preceding content when it comes to selling rap. So they promote a rapper who celebrates drug use more than others. There are some “positive” rappers who don’t speak on health as much because it’s just not their focus but they aren’t celebrating drug use either. I think some of the hip-hop artists who speak on physical and mental health are not as heavily promoted as others. On the flip side, some like Kendrick Lamar are heavily promoted.

 

 

DocSwiner: In a recent interview article with Phonte’ speaking about the album, he speaks of his father’s death. He goes to say “….but my dad’s [death] was totally from health complications. It was diabetes, congestive heart failure, kidneys…And so, he died and was 54.” In what ways can we, as physicians, actively engage the community to speak about the burden of death due to health concerns? (https://djbooth.net/features/2018-03-08-phone-interview-no-news-good-news)

Doc Bintu: First, let me give respect and say Rest in Peace to Brother Craig Mack who was a phenomenal MC and the first artist to get Bad Boy off of the ground. He left us too soon at the age of 46 from congestive heart failure. We don’t know the circumstances surrounding his death but we do know that heart failure is when the heart cant pump blood into the body and organs as strongly as it should and that puts a person at risk for sudden cardiac death and other problems. It can be caused by several problems but two that stand out are high blood pressure and a heart attack. Queen Latifah and her mother, Rita Owens, have partnered with American Heart Association for the “Rise Above Heart Failure” campaign. They seek to educate everyone about the risks and signs of heart failure. As physicians, we can reach into our own family history and relate to our patients and the general public beyond our clinic and hospital walls. I recently lost my dad 2 months ago. It’s hard to speak about but I do look at the loss of his life at 65 and his health complications and as I always have, tried to use my experiences to relate to my patients. When he realized that he had end stage renal disease and started hemodialysis in 2013, I realized that he was facing his own mortality. So many black men fight so hard to survive, that having to face their mortality in light of something as intangible as a health condition that they don’t understand, is very hard. That particular health condition can change how they eat, where they can go, if they can travel and remind them that they might not see their kids become adults. We as practitioners have to help them broach that subject and not just in a short visit or on discharge from the hospital. We also need to offer counseling because a lot of our patients are actually depressed about their diagnosis.

DocSwiner: A recent artist, Rick Ross, was recently hospitalized for a few days from an unknown reason. Media was flushed with news about his hospitalization, but as we have seen before, the noise dies down and the hospitalization will be just a past story. How can health care providers and the media possibly work together to keep health concerns present and relevant in everyday life?

Doc Bintu: I think using our own platforms to reach others beyond hospital and clinic walls is the start. We also need to meet people where they are such as social media outlets. We need to use our platforms such as my organization heartbeatsandhiphop.org, Blackdoctor.org, Doc Swiner’s platform and Dr. Kevin Pho who has helped to bring health into the information age. Many people look to us for advice and to be more accessible but many health care providers are usually at work! We work a lot! However, we are community leaders and we need to claim it and run with it right into the schools, churches, festivals and anywhere beyond hospital walls.

DocSwiner: Beyond giving information of diabetes and hypertension in the black community, what possible solution(s) do you see for diminishing the health care disparities seen in under-represented populations?

Giving information for funny sounding words like “ Hemoglobin A1C” on a pamphlet in a font size that is hard to read to some patients who have various levels of education is missing the entire point of health education. You have to make it plain. You have to make it real. You have to make it relatable. Tell your story or the story of an entertainer who has publicly discussed their own health issues. Ask more questions rather than assume your patient’s understanding of their condition and by all means please start with nutrition! Ask about what they actually eat and how they feel about what they eat. There are a lot of cultural ties to what people eat. There is a lot of convenience within a busy lifestyle tied to what we all consume. We can help change lives if we realize that we can only help them to change their lives with what they put in their mouths. The medication we prescribe can save lives and it can allow them to live better ones but it all starts with what they eat and what they understand about what they eat.

20180317_124019.png

20180317_125356.png

DocSwiner Headshot

20180317_125700

–curated and created with the help of Janie Outlaw

Find more info about Doc Bintu and her work at http://www.heartbeatshiphop.org

No News is Good News by Phonte’ is available on ITunes, Spotify among other online sites.

Happy International Women’s Day: Introducing the Female Condom!

I figured I’d celebrate this day by highlighting a trending and important way to protect women from sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDs–the female condom.

Below is a post from my physician friend, Dr. Renee Matthews, who appeared on the Tom Joyner Morning Radio Show this morning and helps to spread the good word about proper use and importance of prevention.

-DocSwiner


FCgraphic2

Did You Know There Is A Female Condom That Is FDA Approved On The Market?

There are lots of different ways to practice “Safe Sex”. The term safe sex primarily refers to protection against sexually transmitted diseases. Most people believe that this is the responsibility of the man. Well, back in 2005 the first version of the female condom was on the market. This was the first time a barrier method of contraception was for women. FC2 came out in 2009 and it is made with nitrile. This material is natural feeling and warms to body temperature.

3 Reasons to use FC2

  1. One of the reasons to use FC2 is because we as women should take control of our sexual health. The female condom also protects better against Human Papilloma Virus and Herpes Simplex Virus because of the way it protects the outside of the vagina, including the labia minora and labia majora compared to the male condom.
  2. There is a trend that is probably not so new, but now has a term called stealthing. Stealthing is the non-consensual condom removal or “stealthing” is the practice of one sex partner covertly removing a condom, when consent has only been given by the other sex partner for condom-protected safer sex.
  3. Most men do not like using male condoms but don’t mind the female condom because it doesn’t feel different. One size fits all with FC2 so it doesn’t matter what size the man’s penis. FC2 can be placed 2 hours prior to sexual intercourse so it does not interfere with intimacy. It is latex free and can be used with oil and water based lubricants.

 

FCgraphic

Many women still do not know about the FDA approved female condom known as FC2. There are several ways to acquire these condoms. The women of South Africa have been using the female condom with great results. After one year of the female condom program in South Africa protected sex acts went up 92% and 74% of men felt that female condom was either better or much better than the male condom. Please visit their website FC2.com for information on where and how you can purchase FC2.

If you have health insurance there is a good chance that you will be able to receive FC2 for FREE! Please download Hey Doctor App and use Promo Code: FC2 and you can have the condoms mailed to you or sent to your local pharmacy. Currently these are the states where Hey Doctor is available, AK, AZ, CA, CT, FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MO, MT, NE, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VT, VA, WA, WI and WY (more states coming soon).

—————————————————————————————————————————————-

DrRenee

Dr. Renee Matthews is the social media doctor, prescribing remedies to help you to live the life you deserve. She has appeared on television shows such as, The Oprah Winfrey Show and TVOne’s NewsOne Now with Roland Martin where she discussed different health topics. She started her media career with her own radio show on SiriusXM/ReachMD, a programming source for health professionals. In addition, Dr. Renee has been a featured medical correspondent on SiriusXM’s Sway in the Morning and Café Mocha Radio with Loni Love and YoYo (syndicated radio show).

Dr. Renee hosts The Ask Dr. Renee Show, a weekly YouTube show to motivate and inspire viewers to “Live the life they deserve”. Dr. Renee is also the host of Out of Office with Dr. Renee which is apart of Outcome Health and seen in 45,0000+ doctors offices across the US. She is a regular correspondent for HuffPostLive.com and a regular writer for Good Enough Mother, and DiaryofaFirstTimeMom. Dr. Renee has been a contributing health writer for MadameNoire.com, BlackandMarriedwithKids.com, BlackDoctor.org, DiaryofaFirstTimemom.com and GoodEnoughMother.com. She is also a sought after speaker for various health organizations and schools. In addition to writing about health, Dr. Renee is a social media coach, conducts speaking engagements on social media, branding, motivation, and becoming an entrepreneur. Visit her at Ask Dr. Renee

 

 

 

 

 

 

BougieMama blog shares my 5 Tips on NOT becoming Superwoman. Check it out.

5 Tips on being a superwoman without becoming SUPERWOMAN

February 25, 2018

Dr. Nicole Swiner

If you’re a working woman, Mom and/or wife, someone is getting your nerves right at this very moment—your kids, hubby, Mother-in-law, employer, employees, Deaconess—someone. But, if you’re like most of us, you’ve allowed him or her or them to bother you with their issues. The kids need you to pick out their outfits and pick up after them. Your husband or your partner needs you to fix dinner and iron his or her shirt for work. Your staff needs all of their vacation hours approved right now! When is it your time?

Our job doesn’t end with our 9-to-5, does it? The days are never-ending, seemingly, and there’s never enough time in the day.

Welcome to the acknowledgement that you’re a Superwoman. This is your Superwoman Complex world, and I’m your host, DocSwiner—another Superwoman in rehab, herself.

Let’s dive into how we’re going to fix this.

Chapter 1-Tip 1: Get Out of Your Own Way!

We’re killing it. We’re rocking it. All day. Everyday. I see you superwoman—handling your business as the Mistress of your household if you’re a stay-at-home Mom. I also see you if you’re working outside of the home, juggling family obligations, extracurricular activities and trying to stay fit and sane.

Well, enough is enough. Stop doubting yourself. If you sit down, get quiet and write out a business plan or chapter outline, or go outside to start walk/jogging, you can get it done. Don’t jeopardize your own goals because you’re taking care of everyone else’s. Get out of your own way by literally scheduling in your quiet or work out time. It should go on a calendar weekly or monthly, just like everyone else’s doctors’ appointments and games do. I’m here to tell you to stop self-sabotaging and just get started.

 Chapter 2-Tip 2: There’s No Time Like the Present

So, now that you’ve made the decision to make time for you to accomplish that goal, the next question is “When am I supposed to do it?” The truth is that it rarely feels like the “right time.” So, why not start now? Don’t wait. Start that business you’ve always dreamed of, leave that job, change that habit, write that book, or finish that degree.

Time and money will always be obstacles. As time passes and we get older, we tend to have more and more familial and financial obligations. I’m not sure there’s ever a perfect time to take that leap. For me, when I decided to write my first book, I didn’t have the whole amount needed saved at the time. I chose to do a campaign online and asked for donations from my followers and family. It worked like a charm and kept me motivated to continue writing as the donations poured in. In 3 months, I was ready to launch the book. 3-6months prior to that, I wasn’t sure it was the right time. However, I believed, had the faith, and took the first step.

 Chapter 3-Tip 3: “No” is a Complete Sentence

We-especially those of us that are caretakers, wives or mothers-often have a difficult time saying no to those we love and care about. But, it’s necessary. Nay, it’s lifesaving. We work our fingers to the bone at work and at home, and of what’s left of us someone is always willing to take. Don’t let them do it.

As an act of self-preservation, I am encouraged to say no more and set boundaries. I no longer allow patients to have access to me via social media after work hours. I am much less likely to teach a skill or give my professional advice without the other person putting their “skin in the game,” too. My time and opinions are valuable, as well. I’m worth something and so are you. Let’s stop giving ourselves away all the time, for free. I’ll keep working on it, if you promise to keep working on it, too.

Chapter 4-Tip 4: Frenemies are Not Your Friends

I love and hate this topic. I thought that jealousy and envy improved after high school and college. But alas, they continue to rear their ugly heads well into adulthood, and jealousy and envy disguise themselves in different ways. The sayings “let the haters hate” and even worse, “haters gon’ hate” are a few of my pet peeves that are used commonly. This is mostly because many of these haters that we speak of, are part of inner circle or on our friend lists. Why do we allow it to happen?

I heard a couple of friends talk about this on social media recently. They said they’d encountered some soul suckers and energy vultures in their midst. Geez! Stay away, toxic folks. Get those kind of people out of your environment. Shooo, fly, shoo!

Chapter 5-Tip 5: Admit it. You Hate Your Job

When I wrote my first book, “How to Avoid the Superwoman Complex: 12 Ways to Balance Mind, Body & Spirit,” I was rounding out my eighth year of working full time as a family doctor. I was having fun seeing patients all day long, but not so much fun managing hours of insurance-related paperwork and phone calls, which is not taught in medical school or residency – doctors learn the ins-and-outs of business once we start working in the real world. So, I had to get creative to prevent “burn-out.” That’s when I started writing and doing things like this.

With that, I’ll add this: If you hate your job, change it. Shorten or change your work schedule. Ask for a promotion or demotion to a different department. Ask for a change of duties or responsibilities. Or get another job or change careers. Are these changes always easy? Nope. But, is it true that it may be worth your sanity? Absolutely. If you can’t leave your job right now, how about creating a “side hustle;” a “side-gig, ” if you will? If you’re really successful, maybe it becomes your real gig. It could save your sanity as well, because it’ll allow you to do more things you love and are passionate about—like how I am, now, about this.

Be blessed,

DocSwiner

DaddyandPrice2018
BlakePriceandMommy2018
DaddyandBlake2018

Dr. Swiner is a family medicine/general medicine expert, covering a broad spectrum of both medical and mental health issues. As a wife and mother of two, she uses real-life experiences to clearly communicate keys to better health and wellness for mind, body and spirit.  Check out her website and book to learn more.